The 16th of October is World Food Day, sponsored by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. Efforts today centre on ending hunger and promoting food security.
A definition of food security was agreed upon at the World Food Summit in 1996:
“Food security, at the individual, household, national, regional, and global levels is achieved when all people at all times have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe, and nutritious food that meets their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.”
The Institute for Global Food Security at Queen’s University, Belfast, says:
“Food insecurity is the state of being without reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food… According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, more than 820 million people across the globe are under nourished and suffering from hunger and more than 151 million children under 5 are stunted because of lack of proper nutrition. Hunger and malnutrition continue to be an issue due to pressure from stressors such as population growth, income growth, economic resources, conflict and war, inequality, the refugee crisis, epidemics and climatic conditions.” Elliot, Christopher. Queen’s University Belfast. In: Understanding Food Supply Chains. Module 2, Step 2.6. July 2020. Accessed July 2020 at https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/understanding-food-supply-chains
See also: website for World Food Day (link valid as of January 2021).
Promotion of the day started in 1979. In 1981, organizers began assigning a different theme to each year. The Wikipedia entry for World Food Day lists the various themes that there have been to date. The very first theme was “Food comes first”.
The 16th of October was chosen because it is the day that the FAO was founded in 1945. The FAO’s headquarters are in Rome, Italy, right across from the Circus Maximus, and consequently one of their operational languages is Italian.
Video for the 2020 campaign:
|↑1||Elliot, Christopher. Queen’s University Belfast. In: Understanding Food Supply Chains. Module 2, Step 2.6. July 2020. Accessed July 2020 at https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/understanding-food-supply-chains|